It was just a dream.
The hive landed seeders in the City. Thousands of thralls poured out as shock troops, ripping the people apart. There were too few Guardians, too many seeders, and no perimeters could be formed. Families were slaughtered in their homes, buildings were burned to the ground, and the seeders did not stop releasing the Darkness.
When the thralls thinned, acolytes and knights came out. They entered building after building to clear locked doors, destroy the few military checkpoints capable of withstanding the thrall. Then the wizards, with their dark magic, came to maintain dominance against the tide of Guardians spilling from the Tower.
It was night, and the usually golden glow of the City was slowly consumed by shadows as the power grid was taken out. Dozens of Guardians were at the power plants, but it didn’t matter. Their Light gutted.
The Tower stood firm, a hundred Guardians fighting to survive. A seeder even landed on top the place we call home, and the Guardians, ancient and experienced Guardians, threw the infestation from the terraces and fed them to their own flames below. The Tower would not crumble to the hive, but it would crumble.
Shaxx, the great warrior of the Crucible, sent out a missive to all Guardians: Return to the City now, or never return. He wasn’t threatening us. There would be nothing to return to if we did not heed his warning.
The hive released abominations the like we had never seen, the like we never knew crawled around the depths of the Moon. There just wasn’t enough time to explore it all, to wipe it clean of this cancer. Maybe they didn’t even come from the Moon, but unknown colonies farther out. My mind could only process they existed. It could not give them shape. Perhaps they did not have one.
The shadows pounded against the city, and the city was reduced to dirt and ash. The Unspeakable advanced upon the Tower, killed a thousand Guardians, but the Guardians would not fall. The Unknown fell before the Light, and the Tower would stand for another precious hour.
Clouds appeared across the City and time and space were distorted. It was traversed as a child walked across the street or a man would take a shuttle to Mars. The vex appeared in the City, under the City, around the City, and the Darkness had never been so present in her streets. The organic robots struck at the few strategic holds allowed to stand, and then they were ash in the wind. Some disappeared as if they never existed, defeated in a battle fought hours ago, yet we only realized at that moment in time it had been lost.
Then the fallen, our enemies since the Traveler stopped speaking to us, breached our unmanned walls, but they did not attack us. They did not strike down the Tower. With four arms, they tore the hive apart. With spears, seeker rifles, and arc power, they halted the vex here and now, for the fallen had no love for the Darkness and knew our fates were linked.
This did not stop the Darkness, though. It only caused it to ebb and flow with more tendrils than we imagined possible, and it went to the base of the Tower with power we could not conceive. They built constructs at the doorstep and used technology so advanced our greatest cryptarchs could not conceive what they saw, and the tower was breached.
The Tower fell. A million Guardians dropped into orbit, from planets far away, to watch. I was there, in orbit, watching. We watched the Tower topple over and crash against the mountains with a great howl. The City was lost. The Tower crumbled. But there were still people, there was still an army of Darkness never before seen, and there was still an armada of Guardians so large it radiated with the Traveler’s Light.
We swooped in and landed in the City. We pushed back the Darkness, dismantled the vex, and burned the hive from the City. People were brought into perimeters fortified by a hundred Guardians, and taken away to old installations around Earth, far from the fighting. Man was scattered, and as we fought in the City, under the Traveler who was dying, he only watched. Not once did that orb burn brilliantly to show us what we faced. But we faced it bravely, and though a thousand Guardians fell, a hundred thousand were behind them.
That day we destroyed the hive and the vex. We put out the fires of our City. We cleared the rubble of the Tower. We rebuilt, though the Traveler did not shine down on us to thank us. He did not give us guidance. He remained silent, and the council which spoke for him was dead. We are the Light. We are the Traveler. It is by our hand the Darkness will fall. The orb in the sky does not care.
But it was only a dream and I woke up.
The Future War Cult warns against this dream. They’ve heard it a dozen times. Today I join them. I will pledge my guns and grenades to their cause, because when this day comes I will be there, and we will push back the Darkness.
Fantasy Writer and Cartographer
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